STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK: Fashion as Empowerment

STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK: Fashion as Empowerment

We dress for work, for school, for comfort. We dress to impress, to look and feel good. This Fashionista does all this and more: they dress to change perceptions of what people are expected to wear.

“Fashion is a way to have agency over your body,” they said.

This Fashionista described their look as “butch queen,” which makes them feel okay about presenting in a way that can be received as masculine. The label allows them to counter gendering by specifying the difference between traditional masculinity and butch styles. The outfit is based around burgundy and maroon tones. The shorts are from H&M, and the shoes are matte black Dr. Martens, which this Fashionista finds easier to incorporate into a wardrobe.

“With shiny Docs, there’s just so much shoe, you really have to commit to that kind of shine,” they said.

Their socks are from their dad, their hat is from a Toronto discount superstore called Honest Ed’s and their shirt is from a school uniform store that they used to work at.

“I find I get a lot of compliments on items of clothing that I didn’t pay much for, that I got through some weird story,” they said.

You can find similar shirts and hats to the ones pictured here at Forever 21.

This Fashionista stressed that some clothing is a necessary investment, but not all the time: “Sometimes you just want something that looks cute, or you can match with a lot of things, or that is your one stand out piece that you can wear with a T-shirt… and people will remember you after the party,” they said.

What is your STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK? “There are so many little ways present yourself either intentionally or unintentionally in a way that disrupts people’s expectations. It forces you as the wearer, and others as the viewer to change their assumptions about how people should look, what it means to look good, and how people are meant to present themselves. You can do that, and bring that conversation out just by wearing something that you really like.”